A CONSULTANCY agency has backed the Adver’s 160 Appeal by raising more than £1,200 in just a few hours at a post-Christmas charity auction.

Staff at IMSM, a firm based at Signal Point, chose to rally behind Prospect Hospice by dropping off their unwanted Christmas presents at the office and seeking donations from scores of businesses.

On January 30, Swindon employees as well as their counterparts at the head office in Malmesbury entered into a heated bidding war via conference call in aid of the Wroughton charity, raking in a remarkable £1,210 in the process.

Yesterday, the IMSM team presented Prospect with the money as guests including Swindon Town’s Jay McEveley, Alex Pritchard and Wes Foderingham watched on.

Liz Murphy, supervisor for the USA team, said: “We came up with the idea of an auction, the reason being that people had lots of unwanted Christmas presents.

“After a few more discussions people were getting very excited, so we decided to approach local businesses to see if they wanted to donate and the response was very good.

“We received photo shoot vouchers worth over £50, Swindon Town tickets, a signed football and shirt. We had 64 lots donated. Our head office in Malmesbury and our office in Chelmsford joined in making bids over the phone.

“All in all it was a good fun few hours and we raised £1,210.”

Each year the hospice needs around £5.8m to provide care for 2,000 patients and their families. It receives less than 30 per cent of its income from statutory organisations such as the NHS and must raise the rest, around £4.3m annually, with the community’s support.

Amy Francombe, community fundraiser for Prospect, was delighted to accept the company’s cheque.

“We look to the community to raise over 70 per cent of the funds we need,” she said.

“And we rely heavily on the support of people in the community as well as corporate support. IMSM went out, got 64 prizes, all off their own back and did a fantastic job. We didn’t expect them to raise this much, especially since they did it all in the space of just four weeks.

“We want to say a big thank you to all those who donated prizes to the auction.”

Jay McEveley encouraged other businesses and individuals to back the 160 Appeal and help to raise £160,000 for Prospect Hospice by the end of December.

“It’s an important cause,” he said. “I’m sure that with the right mentality and motivation we can raise £160,000 by December.”


By card: Online through the donate now button, www.prospect-hospice.net

In cash: Prospect Hospice reception in Wroughton, Prospect Hospice retail shops or the Swindon Advertiser office

Prospect Hospice can also take card donations over the phone – contact the fundraising team on 01793 816161

Taking part in an event for Prospect? Why not donate through our appeal – let us know via email on 160appeal@swindonadvertiser.co.uk or call us on 01793 501806.


WHEN you raise money for the Swindon Advertiser 160 appeal, you support the greatest of local causes.

You can also be sure that every single penny you give will go directly to that cause.

There can be scarcely a person in the town or for miles around whose life has not been touched in some way by the work of the hospice.

Even those without personal experience of Prospect Hospice’s vital work will almost certainly know somebody who has reason to be thankful to it.

The hospice brings comfort, reassurance and dignity not just to the lives of patients but also to their loved ones.

Excellence comes at a price, however, and the bulk of the hospice’s funding has always come from the community it serves.

We launched our appeal because we believe the hospice is worth at least £1,000 for every year of the Swindon Advertiser’s existence, and we’ve set a December deadline for reaching £160,000.

Pledging your support couldn’t be easier. You can read about appeal events in the newspaper and then sign up for them by visiting the hospice’s website.

If you’re unable to take part in an event, why not hold one of your own? It could be a coffee morning, a fundraising sale, a pamper evening, a karaoke competition, a raffle, a pamper night, a dress down day or anything else your imagination can conjure.

Tell us what you’re planning and we’ll tell everybody else.

Or perhaps you’re a company looking to choose an appeal for 2014. You really couldn’t do better than this one.

Whoever you are and whatever you’re thinking of doing, tell us about it at 160appeal@swindonadvertiser.co.uk


  • Parachute for Prospect, March 2, Redlands Airfield. Registration £50, minimum sponsorship £355
  • Walk of Memories, March 9, Buscot Park. Registration £8 adults, £3 under 16s, suggested sponsorship £80
  • Prospect’s Big Bike, April 27, Nationwide Pavilion. Registration £15, suggested sponsorship £100
  • Sunday Walkies, May 18, Marlborough Cricket Club. Registration £8, suggested sponsorship £80
  • Dartmoor Weekend Trek, May 30-June 1. Registration £50, suggested sponsorship £350
  • Starlight Walk, June 28. Registration from £12, suggested sponsorship £100
  • The Big Swim, July 12, Bowmoor Sailing Club, Lechlade. Registration £20, suggested sponsorship £100.
  • Avebury Rocks, July 13. Tickets £25, 14s and under £12, suggested sponsorship for walkers £50.
  • Garden Fete, September 6, Prospect grounds.
  • Full length and fabulous ball, September 27, Steam Museum.
  • Fire and Glass Walk, November 2, Alexandra House. Registration £30, suggested sponsorship £150.
  • Let’s Dance, November 28. Registration £35, suggested sponsorship £250.